Ad Banner

Study finds Facebook profile photos reveal people’s intelligence

Researchers from the Psychometrics Centre at the University of Cambridge have developed an algorithm that could identify how smart a person is based on his photo on Facebook.

This algorithm works by looking on some factors such as “how people pose for the camera, the clothes they wear, and the presence of friends and partners in their pictures,” all of which present information about their lifestyles and the way they prefer to show themselves to the world.

Profile photos from 1,122 Facebook users who had taken an IQ test, were used to analyze photo features with higher or lower scores.

The result of the study highlighted the fact that people are pretty inaccurate in guessing a person’s intelligence based on his photo. For example, a person wearing glasses and smiling doesn’t mean he is already smart. Neither do aspects like standing too close to the camera can determine one’s IQ.

For this reason, authors Xingjie Wei and David Stillwell trained their algorithm to make two separate predictions: people’s intelligence based on their profile photo and their perceived intelligence based on the likely responses of others.

The algorithm found that intelligent people typically only feature themselves in their profile photo. Their shot is captured in focus with an uncluttered background. It was also found that smart people who are recognized to be smart by others often feature the color green in their profile picture but not red, purple or pink.

(Photo Source :